Skip to main content

SteelSeries Spectrum 5XB Headset Review

Overall Feeling: 

The SteelSeries Spectrum 5XB is a headset for your Xbox 360 (and PC) that is built for the professional gamer. The headset lets you separate your online teammates’ voices from the sounds explosions, gunfire, planes flying overhead, the whole nine yards. So, if your teammate is barking orders your headset will turn down the games audio automatically through the LiveMix.

The Pros: 

-The AudioMixer is a great addition for any kind of gamer.
-Headset doesn't roast your ears like a oven.
-Comfortable and light.
-Nearly indestructible
-Still fits with glasses

The Cons: 

-Not an ideal headset for a living room where your TV is far away from your couch.
-Not Wireless.
-Hard to set up with TV's that are mounted.
-Hard to plug in AudioMixer in some PC's. Rating : 

After years of perfecting their gear for the professional PC gamers over in their platform; SteelSeries has finally released a console entertainment headset with the Spectrum 5XB Xbox 360 Gaming Headset. SteelSeries has gained a reputation of creating nearly indestructible gaming hardware. From keyboards you can smash between a door to a gaming mouse you can throw against the wall and it will be ok. The 5XB is no exception to the reputation that the gear company has gained.

Now I am a pretty aggressive gamer. When I keep dying in a round of Call of Duty I do get frustrated and things tend to get thrown; usually controllers. Hell sometimes its headsets too. I'm not going to lie to you about it. You wouldn't believe how many headsets I have broken because of this, but with the 5XB I feel like I can give them to my new 1 year old teething puppy and they will survive (actually I think that happened once without my knowledge; damn dogs).

The 5XB connects in two very simple ways. There are two 3.5mm audio jacks for stereo sound and a microphone, and RCA and a USB cable to the Xbox (or PC) for audio and power. So if you have a newer television set you probably have the option input for headphones. If that is the case you can just plug it right in. If you have an older TV however you will have to whip out the RGB adapter that the headset comes with, but that's not that big of a deal.  The change up from PC to Xbox is also very simple. All you do is use the 3.5mm jack and plug it into your computer via headset and microphone inputs. The Headset is ideal for PC gamers, and Skype calls as well. I've made a few Skype calls with this bad boy and, as a matter of fact, I received compliments on how much better I sound.

The most impressive piece of technology I have seen from this headset though is the AudioMixer that controls the LiveMix itself. The AudioMixer is a small adapter that goes into your Xbox 360 controller that lets you control both your game volume and player volume.

The only issue I had with LiveMix really isn't SteelSeries fault. You get a lot of assholes out there (on XBL) that decide to pump rap music out of their headsets in Black Ops. It's really annoying when I am playing a game and the LiveMix confuses it for someone speaking. Though, that's not really their fault.

Hopefully SteelSeries will get on the PlayStation ball soon. You tend to find more mature players on the PSN who don't do that shit and also focus on the game itself.

As for the feel of the headset itself its very light both when you're carrying it and wearing it. The headset can also be taken apart for travel and reassembled again for play. That was a really interesting and cool feature that not all other competitor headsets have.  Oh yea, and a retractable mic is also pretty bad-ass.

The downside to this headset is that it is not wireless which made it inconvenient to me because I have a couch very far away from my TV. For most competitive gamers, who this headset is made for, their monitors will be close to their consoles so it works out for them. It's hard to get this set up for those who have mounted TV's as well if you have a swivel mount it may not be as hard for you. I'm old school though and got a mount on the cheap from eBay. Still these are all little things compared to a fantastic entertainment headset.

SteelSeries has made a triumphant entrance into the console world with the 5XB headset, and I still haven't mentioned the best part.  They will only cost you $90! Most headsets these days cost a small fortune and you need to take out a loan from the bank in order to pay them off. Almost every gamer is on a budget and I can comfortably say you won't find a better headset anywhere else for this price.  

You can pick up the SteelSeries Spectrum 5XB Gaming Headset at almost every major retailer or you can buy it at their website.